It Took You to Build a (South Indian) Village

Posted on | November 18, 2011 | 16 Comments

Beth Whitman with Family in Karunganni

Beth here, one of the co-founders of Passports with Purpose.

While we’re in the process of gearing up for this year’s fundraiser, I thought you might like to hear about what you made happen through last year’s Passports with Purpose.

You’ll recall that our 2010 fundraiser brought in nearly $65,000 through Friends of LAFTI. Those funds are helping build 25 homes in a small village, Karunganni, in South India.

Karunganni is located in the state of Tamil Nadu. A small village near the coast, it’s far enough inland to have dodged the tsunami in 2004, but is prone to flooding and, like much of India, struggles with extreme poverty.

In January, I visited Karunganni just as ground was being broken on those homes. What I found there was a very grateful community where most people live in poorly built mud huts that crumble and need to be patched and rebuilt every few years.

Family in Mud Hut in KarunganniWith the funds raised through Passports with Purpose, 25 families are in the process of moving into well-built brick homes that are expected to last far longer than their mud huts. LAFTI provided the land for these families, now landowners for the first time! An added bonus is that the homes are signed over to the woman of the house – an amazing feat given that India is a very patriarchal country.

The thing that blows me away about this little story is that families are changed. Improved. Provided a new life. And that this would NOT have been possible without hundreds of people donating in $10 increments.

That’s powerful.

Brick HomeThe photo at left was taken this summer at one of the partially built homes.

Brick Home

Once homes are complete, they’ll look like this home built in a nearby village through LAFTI.

Passports with Purpose 2011 launches on November 30th. It’s not too late to participate as a blogger or to donate a prize. And we encourage all to donate between November 30 – December 16!


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16 Responses to “It Took You to Build a (South Indian) Village”

  1. Jill Robinson | Writer & Editor » Passports With Purpose: Win a Stay at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel
    November 30th, 2011 @ 3:39 am

    […] by travel bloggers to support projects in the developing world. Last year, PWP raised $65,000 to build a village in India, and this year we plan to raise $80,000 to build two libraries in southern and eastern […]

  2. Jill Robinson | Writer & Editor » Passports With Purpose: Win a Stay at Hotel Vitale
    November 30th, 2011 @ 4:02 am

    […] by travel bloggers to support projects in the developing world. Last year, PWP raised $65,000 to build a village in India, and this year we plan to raise $80,000 to build two libraries in southern and eastern […]

  3. » Blog Archive Help Us Build Libraries in Zambia - Win a Biking Tour with Beyound Boundaries
    November 30th, 2011 @ 6:03 am

    […] One initiative that makes me proud to be a member of the travel community is the annual Passports with Purpose (PwP) project which brings together bloggers, travel industry professionals, and nonprofit organizations in an effort to support various worthy causes since its inception in 2008. Last year, with all our collective help in raising over $65,000, Passports with Purpose was able to build a village in India. […]

  4. Passports with Purpose 2011: Help Build Libraries in Zambia | Legal Nomads
    November 30th, 2011 @ 8:27 am

    […] Passports with Purpose (or PwP as the hashtag will be known in the coming weeks) is an annual travel bloggers’ fundraiser founded in 2008 to give back to the places we, as travelers, visit. Cobbling together a wide variety of travel bloggers from around the world, the campaign has been growing with each year, gaining momentum (and much appreciated press) in its aim to dedicate social media and blogging clout toward a bigger-picture cause.  In 2009, ninety bloggers participated and raised almost $30,000 to build a school in rural Cambodia (complete with a school nurse and a kitchen garden that provides each child a daily meal). Last year’s fundraiser with LAFTI included one-hundred and ninety-nine bloggers and raised over $58,000, and the Tamil Nadu village is well on its way to completion. […]

  5. Passports with Purpose 2011 Fund Raiser | Budget Travelers Sandbox
    November 30th, 2011 @ 10:49 am

    […] Passports With Purpose annual fundraiser kicks off today. The brains and hearts behind this annual event are Seattle area travel bloggers Michelle Duffy, Debbie Dubrow, Pam Mandel and Beth Whitman. Bloggers in the travel community support people and communities in the developing world who need our assistance. Donations, totaling $65,000, raised in last years fundraiser were used to build a village in India. Take a look. […]

  6. Passports With Purpose - Bloggers Build Libraries | Ottsworld Travel Experiences
    November 30th, 2011 @ 11:01 am

    […] $10 raffle ticket. The last few years they raised enough money to build a school in Cambodia and a build a village in India. This year we are raising money to build libraries in Zambia via Room to […]

  7. Travel News Blog » Blog Archive » Bringing books to Zambia: Passports with Purpose 2011
    November 30th, 2011 @ 11:45 am

    […] year we lifted adequate income (mostly in US$10 increments) to  build an whole encampment in southern India in partnership with  Friends of LAFTI.  This year, PwP is partnering with  Room to Read for a […]

  8. Passports With Purpose 2011 - Donate to a Great Cause, Win a NZ Prize! » A Dangerous Business Travel Blog
    November 30th, 2011 @ 5:47 pm

    […] the children there with one healthy meal per day. Last year, the goal was set at $50,000 to build a village in rural India, in partnership with LAFTI International. Well guess what? We smashed that goal, raising over […]

  9. You Can Help Build Libraries in Zambia and Win Some Great Prizes Too! « « IdelishIdelish
    December 1st, 2011 @ 7:10 am

    […] Three years ago, Passport with Purpose raised $7,000 for Heifer International. Then in 2009, they raised $30,000 to build a school in Cambodia. Last year, together with the travel blogging community, they raised $65,000 to build homes for a village in India. […]

  10. Win a Washington Wine Country Experience and Bring Books to Kids in Zambia « Hip Travel Mama: Seattle travel expert. Luxury family travel guide. Luxury hotel reviews for families.
    December 1st, 2011 @ 10:58 pm

    […] have raised $100,000 to fund projects for Heifer International, build a School in Cambodia, and build an entire Village in India. I had the privilege of spending time with them last night at Hotel 1000 for the Passports with […]

  11. Passports With Purpose 2011: Libraries in Zambia - Over Yonderlust » Over Yonderlust
    December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:32 am

    […] known as Passports With Purpose. Last year Over Yonderlust donated $10 of our saved travel money to build a village in India – AND they got more than the goal. This is one of the very few projects that we 100% stand […]

  12. Passports with Purpose 2011 | Darin Rogers Photography
    December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:08 pm

    […] Passports with Purpose 2011 The Library – SeattlePassports with Purpose is back this year with a new project they’re supporting. Last year PwP raised money to help fund the building of 25 homes in a small village, Karunganni, in South India. Last year’s fundraiser was hugely successful and almost $65,000 was raised. You can read more of the results from last year at this blog post. […]

  13. Win a Tour of Mt. Rainier Glaciers and Waterfalls
    December 4th, 2011 @ 5:14 am

    […] Passports with Purpose raised about $30,000 and built a school in Cambodia. Last year, the effort built a village in rural India. This year,  the goal is to build two libraries in Zambia. And YOU can be a part of this awesome […]

  14. Win a Downtown Atlanta Vacation and Help Build a Library in Zambia | Field Trips with Sue
    September 10th, 2013 @ 9:56 am

    […] has been raised to fund projects for Heifer International, build a School in Cambodia, and build an entire Village in India. This year, funds will go to build two libraries in Zambia through a partnership with Room to […]

  15. Seattle to Zambia: Our Journey to Chilileka Basic School Library :
    September 14th, 2013 @ 7:00 pm

    […] with Purpose’s goals each fundraiser is to visit the completed project – whether it is the village in India or the school in Cambodia – and to witness the impact the project has to the local […]

  16. Passports with Purpose Raised $25,000 for Sustainable Harvest International!
    December 24th, 2014 @ 10:36 am

    […] 2010: $65,000 for an entire village in India […]

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